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Your Roadmap to the Perfect Destination Wedding

In 2021 (and no doubt for the foreseeable future) we’re living our new kind of lives that include daily sanitiser, always making sure you have a mask stashed in the car and extreme caution around planning any interstate travel. But if you’re a Sydney-sider or live in regional NSW, you’re recently engaged and have always dreamt of having a destination wedding, don’t despair – here’s how to have the perfect destination wedding, complete with luxe Mediterranean vibes, those once in a lifetime holiday activities you’ll remember forever and insta worthy snaps to make your friends glow green with envy, without having to leave the state.

Ancora wedding reception space
Ancora reception space: Wanderer and the Wild Photography

But first – It’s been challenging and overwhelming trying to keep up with the changing restrictions, especially when it comes to planning your dream wedding. That’s why we are so thrilled that NSW now have a solid roadmap to reopen our state and it’s damn good news for weddings! So we thought we’d keep it simple and layout what the roadmap looks like for weddings at Ancora over the next couple of months.

Here’s what the roadmap looks like:

From Monday 11 October ~

  • Up to 100 guests allowed at weddings, however the 1 person per 4sqm rule applies, meaning at Ancora, we can have up to 75 guests.
  • At this stage, all guests must be vaccinated aside from a maximum of 5 unvaccinated people permitted at your ceremony.
  • You must be seated while eating and drinking.
  • Everyone’s welcome on the dancefloor!

From Monday 18 October (NSW reaching 80% double vaccination) ~

  • No cap on wedding guests, however the 1 person per 4sqm rule applies, meaning at Ancora, we can have up to 75 guests.
  • At this stage, all guests must be vaccinated aside from a maximum of 5 unvaccinated people permitted at your ceremony.
  • You must be seated while eating and drinking.
  • Everyone’s welcome on the dancefloor!

From Wednesday 1 December ~

  • Density limits change to 1 person per 2sqm, meaning Ancora can host up to 150 guests.
  • Guests can be unvaccinated.
  • You can be standing while eating and drinking.
  • Everyone’s still welcome on the dancefloor!

Amazing news for people living in Sydney and regional NSW, it feels so great to be able to finally have confidence back in the wedding industry, and have a clear path to your dream destination wedding…

The perfect destination wedding:

While we can’t travel to the Greek Islands just yet, we have the next best thing. Inspired by the Mediterranean, Ancora is the perfect destination wedding venue for you to soak up all those dreamy, sun filled, waterside, holiday vibes. We’re feeling relaxed just day dreaming about it. So here’s our top picks, sneaky tips and favourite places we think you would enjoy in Northern NSW.

Getting here ~

  • Just a short 1.5 hour flight from Sydney to Ballina airport. (Other departure options include Newcastle and Dubbo.) Then you can hire a car to cruise up to the NSW border, just a one hour drive.

Check in ~

  • Stay at one of the many beautifully styled air bnb homes, holiday resorts or luxe apartments in the area. A few of our top suggestions for you here.
Destination Wedding bridal party accommodation
Baye House: Photo – Figtree Wedding Photography

Pre Wedding Pamper ~

  • To ensure maximum relaxation, lock in a pre wedding pamper with the girls. We can’t go past Kalm Springs (offering exclusive hire of this insanely gorgeous space and french champagne) and of course maximum luxe at Halcyon House Spa with sunset cocktails at Paper Daisy.
(Top Kalm Springs: Photo – Kristy Mason Photography (Bottom) Halcyon House Spa: Photo – kararosenlund.com

Pre Wedding Dinner ~

  • String out the wedding excitement beyond just the wedding day with a pre wedding dinner. And our sister restaurant in Casuarina is the perfect place! Enjoy all the vibrant and fresh flavours you’ve come to expect from modern Mexican food in Australia, at Lolita’s Mexican Cantina. Think charred squid, crispy chicken, prawn tostados, jalapeño poppers and of course tacos galore! Sneaky tip, don’t book direct, chat to your Ancora wedding planner and they’ll sort out all the details for you!
Lolita’s Mexican Cantina: Photo – Kristy Mason Photography

Get Hitched ~

  • Don’t forget to order your last minute luxe wedding essentials from local Tweed business The Whole Bride. Use our special code ANCORA for 15% off and enjoy express pick up from their Casuarina shop. Another sneaky tip for you, they are next door to Lolita’s so kill two birds with one stone!
  • Then you’re set for the best part, party into the night at our waterfront wedding haven Ancora, enjoying a Mediterranean inspired feasting menu including our signature slow cooked lamb and Byron Bay haloumi.
Beachside wedding ceremony
Mediterranean inspired interior for wedding reception venue
(Top) Lovers Rock:Photo – Figtree Wedding Photography (Bottom) Ellie + Jack: Photo – Nikolas David Photography

The Recovery ~

  • The all important next day recovery, and what better place than the lush lawns of Husk Distillery, home of the infamous Ink Gin.
Husk Distillery: Photo – Kristy Mason Photography

Start the Honeymoon ~

  • Head back down the coast to beautiful Byron Bay to start the honeymoon. Indulge in a luxe stay at Barbara by Kinsfolk, The Bower, Crystalbrook Byron, Elements of Byron or our top pick to continue those Mediterranean holiday vibes, Raes on Wategos.
  • Explorers: Go for a swim at famous Wategos beach, stroll the Cape Byron Lighthouse walk and visit the most eastern point of australia.
  • Nature lovers: Try snorkelling at Julain Rocks or kayak with dolphins.
  • Adrenaline junkees: There’s no better place for skydiving or hot air ballooning.
  • Foodies: Enjoy a long lunch at Frida’s Field, cocktails at The Mez Club. And dinner at Fleet, if you’re lucky to snag a booking a this exclusive 14 seater restaurant.
(Top) Raes on Wategos: Photo – thedesignfiles.net (Bottom) Fleet: Photo – delicious.com.au

If we haven’t yet convinced you with a roadmap of confidence and a destination wedding itinerary to make anyone swoon, than you can check out some of the dream weddings Ancora has been so lucky to host.

Or if you would like to know more about the packages Ancora offer, you can request our Wedding Kit here.

If you’ve been trying to get married for the past couple of years but your plans have continued to be sidetracked, you may be in a bit of rush. We are for you! We’ve put together a handy little checklist to plan a wedding in 90 days! Yep, you heard right, you could plan your Ancora wedding in just three months and be hitched by the time summer is out.

And finally, if you’re concerned about being too far away to come and have a look at our waterside venue in real life, we have you covered with the next best thing. Not just a virtual tour but a 360 interactive tour that can be guided by our team. You’ll get to see every area of our venue and some of the surrounds like you’re actually there in person. Feel free to chat to our team if you’re curious!

Ancora weddings bridal party destionation wedding
Ellie + Jack’s Ancora Wedding: Photo – Nikolas David Photography
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